Russia to extend Turkish Stream to Bulgaria, PM Borissov says

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia May 31, 2018

Borissov and Bulgarian President Rumen Radev have both visited Russia in recent weeks as they mount a charm offensive aimed at taking part in the new pipeline that will deliver Russian gas to Europe via Turkey.

Romanian court says president must dismiss anticorruption chief

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest May 30, 2018

Romania's ruling coalition finally succeeds in decapitating anticorruption body that has launched probes into dozens of top politicians and businesspeople.

Turkey’s economic confidence index falls by sharp 5% m/m in May

bne IntelliNews May 30, 2018

Sentiment seen as shaken by turmoil surrounding decline of the Turkish lira and subsequent emergency rate hike.

Ukrainian security forces stage killing of Russian journalist in baffling stunt

bne IntelliNews May 30, 2018

Russian war reporter Babchenko appeared live and well at a press conference in Kyiv the day after pictures posted on social media appeared to show him shot dead in his apartment.

CEE faces massive cuts in EU cohesion spending

Wojciech Kosc in Warsaw May 30, 2018

Warsaw says changes that will see Poland losing €19.5bn in EU funding in 2021-2027 are “unacceptable”, as Brussels shifts focus from GDP per capita to youth unemployment, climate and integration of migrants.

Three-day Aral Sea salt storm hits Uzbek and Turkmen agriculture

bne IntelliNews May 30, 2018

Tempest sucks up dried-out parts of the former water mass, poisons crops and hits livestock herds.

Energy Community drops cases against Macedonia

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia May 30, 2018

After years of delays Skopje has finally adopted an EU-requested energy law that foresees further liberalisation of the electricity market to include small firms and households.

Serbia’s newly-appointed finance minister aims to curb public debt quickly

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest May 30, 2018

Former Belgrade mayor Sinisa Mali takes over the finance ministry as Belgrade prepares to secure a new deal with the IMF.

Demerged Bank of Georgia’s FTSE 250 launch coincides with sell-off on Italy woes

bne IntelliNews May 29, 2018

LSE welcome for lender and Georgia Capital overshadowed by unsettled markets.

Hungarian government files 'Stop Soros' bill to parliament

bne IntelliNews May 29, 2018

After the landslide election victory in April, politicians from Hungary's ruling Fidesz are referring to their strong electoral mandate to step up their fight against organisations they deem to promote migration.

Ukraine president urges switching nation's finances from loans to FDI

bne IntelliNews May 29, 2018

Petro Poroshenko calls on foreign investors to "write their names in the history of Ukrainian success" but analysts warn that political instability, inefficiency and corruption are deterring investment.

World Bank’s IFC issues first Uzbek soum-denominated bond

bne IntelliNews May 29, 2018

"Samarkand" bond to enable local lender Hamkorbank to boost long-term local currency financing.

Turkey reportedly assessing potential Russian Su-57 deal if US bars F-35 purchases

bne IntelliNews May 28, 2018

Speculation emerges after American senators move to block fighter jet deliveries in response to Ankara’s planned S-400 missile purchases and jailing of pastor.

Romanian ruling coalition loses majority

Carmen Simion in Bucharest May 28, 2018

The ruling parties no longer have a majority in the lower house of parliament following a string of defections from the PSD to ex-PM Victor Ponta’s Pro Romania party.

Central bank’s rates simplification sends Turkish lira on a charge

bne IntelliNews May 28, 2018

Ailing currency rises more than any other against the dollar as regulator hits on a policy tool change that delivers some relief.

Russia's VTB Bank and Sogaz to merge insurance assets

bne IntelliNews May 28, 2018

"The largest player in the history of Russian insurance segment" will be created after state-controlled VTB Bank sells its insurance assets to Sogaz, the country's largest insurer, the bank announced on May 25.

China's CITIC pays CEFC’s debt, will take over stake from J&T

Jaroslav Hroch in Prague May 27, 2018

Deal paves the way for J&T to return seized assets and call off the crisis management team it had installed at the troubled Chinese group's Czechia-based division.

Turkey’s Simsek struggles to reassure markets as economists warn of currency-and-debt crisis

Will Conroy in Prague May 25, 2018

Krugman assails Erdogan’s quality of leadership amid “big shock”.

Saffron futures launched on Iran Mercantile Exchange

bne IntelliNews May 25, 2018

With around 85% of the lucrative vivid crimson commodity cultivated in Iran, the Iranians expect to set the price for global trading.

Trump's former chief strategist Steve Bannon hails Viktor Orban's policies at Budapest conference

bne IntelliNews May 24, 2018

Hungarian PM Orban has become a popular figure among alt-right supporters for his tough anti-Muslim and anti-migration stance.